Standing in the True Grace of God, Lesson 5

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By BARBARANNE KELLY|CONTRIBUTOR

This week in our study of 1 Peter we are looking at the role of Scripture in the salvation of God’s people. Our salvation was decreed by God before the foundation of the world; revealed gradually throughout the scriptures of the Old Testament as men called by God prophesied of the coming of Christ, his suffering, and his glorious victory; and it has now been announced to us by those who preach the good news of our risen Lord. This good news, brought to us over the millennia with increasing light and culminating in our new birth, demands from us a response. We who have been made new are to turn away from our former lives and live as obedient children of our Father. This is our lesson in a nutshell; let’s take a closer look. Continue reading

Partnering 2 Remember, Week 5

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By BARBARANNE KELLY|CONTRIBUTOR

Congratulations on reaching chapter two of your memorization! This may be a milestone for you—you have memorized an entire chapter of the Bible! Way to go! Now, wherever you may be, whether stuck in traffic or folding laundry, you can recite to yourself an entire chapter of the living and abiding word of God. I hope that you are encouraged by your progress to keep going with the rest of the book. Continue reading

Standing in the True Grace of God, Lesson 4

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By BARBARANNE KELLY|CONTRIBUTOR

Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ! According to his great mercy, he has caused us to be born again to a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead, to an inheritance that is imperishable, undefiled, and unfading, kept in heaven for you, who by God’s power are being guarded through faith for a salvation ready to be revealed in the last time. In this you rejoice, though now for a little while, if necessary, you have been grieved by various trials, so that the tested genuineness of your faith—more precious than gold that perishes though it is tested by fire—may be found to result in praise and glory and honor at the revelation of Jesus Christ. Though you have not seen him, you love him. Though you do not now see him, you believe in him and rejoice with joy that is inexpressible and filled with glory, obtaining the outcome of your faith, the salvation of your souls. (1 Peter 1:3-9) Continue reading

Partnering 2 Remember 1 Peter, week 4

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By BARBARANNE KELLY|CONTRIBUTOR

We begin this week’s passage, 1 Peter 1:20-25, by again looking back. “He” in verse 20 refers to Christ, as he is mentioned in verse 19. Peter is now telling us that Jesus Christ, whose precious blood ransomed us from our futile ways, was foreknown—fore-loved, fore-ordained, pre-destined (the same word used for us in verse 2) —to be our substitutionary sacrifice before the foundation of the world. There was no “plan B” with God. When Adam and Eve sinned in the garden, God didn’t need to re-think what he had ordained for mankind. Before creation, God knew man would sin and need a savior. Christ was appointed to be our atoning sacrifice in the eternal counsel of the Trinity. Continue reading

Standing in the True Grace of God, Lesson 3

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By BARBARANNE KELLY|CONTRIBUTOR

In the third week of our study we come at last to First Peter. The best way to begin our study of this letter is to read the whole thing in one sitting. This is, after all, how its first readers would have treated it. It would have been read in its entirety, out loud, to the assembled congregations of the churches to which it was sent. As we read there are several themes which are repeated throughout the letter. Continue reading

Partnering 2 Remember 1 Peter, Week 3

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By BARBARANNE KELLY|CONTRIBUTOR

Welcome to the third week of memorizing 1st Peter! I hope that by now you are finding encouragement in your progress—I know I am. As I am filling in for Jana this week, I will lead you first through how I thought about this week’s portion of scripture, which helps me follow the flow of Peter’s argument. If it makes sense to me I am better able to memorize it. Then I will go over a few “hooks” for memory. Continue reading

Standing in the True Grace of God, Lesson 2

By BARBARANNE KELLY|CONTRIBUTOR

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Our first lesson ended at the lowest point in the apostle Peter’s life. He had denied his beloved Master and Lord and we last saw him weeping bitterly. Our lesson this week opens with the scene in which the Lord will restore Peter to his position as leader of the disciples. Easter has come, and the tomb was empty. Peter has seen his Lord on several occasions, but in John 21 we see how Jesus tenderly gathers up the pieces of his broken disciple and puts him back together, turning his fall to the good for him and for the church. Continue reading